A new awareness and recruitment campaign has been launched by Tusla to find carers for separated children seeking international protection. The ‘Tusla Separated Children Seeking International Protection’ campaign will run from September 6-12.
Tusla – Child and Family Agency, requires a panel of carers from different family, cultural, religious, social and linguistic backgrounds to reflect the diversity of unaccompanied minors coming into care in the State, many of whom are teenagers.
The initiative is Tusla’s first dedicated public information campaign to recruit a range of carers for this vulnerable cohort of children.
As part of an EU-wide project, Ireland undertook to accept 36 unaccompanied minors from Greece. Eight young people arrived in June 2020, and another 13 were brought to Ireland in July 2021.
Tusla, which participates in missions to assist European Union relief efforts to help children in migration and provide them with safety and shelter, is in the process of receiving another 15 children who will be arriving in September 2021.
Carers are needed, who can provide a supportive environment where the young person can develop their confidence and life skills to eventually enable them to live independently. From 2016 to 2020, 438 unaccompanied minors have come into the care of Tusla. At the end of July 2021, Tusla had 54 separated children seeking international protection in its care.
MAKING A CHANGE
Kate Duggan, Director of Services and Integration, Tusla said: “This, Tusla’s first dedicated separated children seeking international protection campaign is an opportunity for people to make a personal contribution to the shared international humanitarian effort to help children who have suffered in many ways.
“We have an active role in caring for these children as they settle into a family, with their educational and social networks, and preparing for adulthood. Additionally, they and their carers need to negotiate the challenges and joys of difference – ethnicity, culture, religion and language. It only takes one person to help a child and to enable them to develop their full potential as they journey through life.”
Additional carers are now required so that Tusla can build capacity to care for such children into the future. Many unaccompanied minors arrive here as teenagers, aged 14 to 17-years-old.
The phoneline/email contact points for specific enquiries regarding this campaign will be open for two weeks from August 30 – September 12.